Back by popular demand, this May there are 3 'bring and buy' dates at the Trading Store,
We have vintage tools, gardening books, and spare plants for sale to raise money for Show funds. Bring your spare plants, unwanted gardening books and any surplus tools to help swell the Show Kitty! Pick up a bargain for yourself too.
There are still some seed potatoes left (at the time of writing this) and they are now at bargain prices. If you have a bit of spare ground you've not been able to prepare to your satisfaction this spring, why not quickly pop some extra spuds in! Potatoes are very tolerant and their fine roots break up the soil while the top growth of lush foliage smothers out the weeds.
The pumpkin show was a modest affair, and there are definitely allotmenteers out there who would have won bottles of wine, vouchers for seeds and other goodies if they had brought their pumpkins and squash along!
The pumpkin show was judged by Kirsty Cato with help from Vivienne Lawson as one class was very close. Tony Fagg as Show Secretary wished to compete so stood aside as judge.
Gilda also won '3 different squash, one of each' (yes, that's me, it was embarassing) and donated her prize of £10 worth of Thompson and Morgan vouchers to Tony for the sake of fairness.
There were no entries in the classes 'Heaviest Marrow' or 'Ugliest Squash', so you all missed out there, folks - the prizes were there for the taking if you had come along.
Prizes included bottles of wine and vouchers for Thompson and Morgan Seeds, vouchers for Tuckers Seeds, and bulbs and garlic kindly donated by friendly local nursery Harringe Plants on the A20 at Sellinge.
That is a ten pence piece next to that leek, folks. So, as you can see, this wasn't a giant show, it was a show of giant leeks! The black mark is magic marker, denoting the height above the roots where the girth of this monster was to be measured.
Pot leeks are grown for girth, not length, and some exhibits were disqualified because the distance between roots and the 'button' - the point where the leaves divide - was too long.
It was a real thrill to stumble upon this show - literally we just saw a blackboard with the worlds 'Leek Show Marquee' chalked on them and an arrow pointing past the pub. For two keen allotmenteers it was the icing on the cake. So read on to see more of the Giant Leeks, not to mention onions the size of cabbages and Chrysanthemums as big as your head.
Here we have the biggest Chrysanths you've ever seen. And, on the right, the same in pink, just in case you couldn't believe your eyes. Both by the same grower, who also won the prize for the leeks - and several of the other classes. We didn't ask the secret of his success as we thought it highly unlikely he'd tell us! But, believe me, we were awe-struck. But more about those leeks . . . here is a selection of photos to give you a faint idea of their stunning hugeness.
The leek nearest the camera is the same one as in the first photo, with the 10p coin next to it. Scary!
And if you want something other than leeks, here are a few other scary vegetables . . .
As you'll have seen earlier this month, the produce stall at the Pilgrim's Hospice raised a good amount. We don't expect quite so many people at the Summer Show (we haven't got a minibus laid on or anything like that) but all money raised will be very useful, so please do take a few minutes to walk over your plot and scoop up your surplus of whatever you have a lot of. All contributions incredibly welcome!
Results of the 'Best Plot' competition, plus all the photos we could get, are now there for you to see. Certificates will be awarded, plus the vintage silver cup for Best Plot, at the Summer Show on Saturday.
At this year's summer show on 23rd August, there will be a secondhand gardening book stall to raise money. So we urgently want your unwanted garden and gardening books! they do not need to be specifically fruit and veg - all gardening books are welcome, also books on related subjects such as country crafts, cooking with vegetables, jams and preserves and so on. We are advertising it as vintage, secondhand and antiquarian, so do not worry if your books are past the first flush of youth or are even older than you are!
Books can be brought to the Trading Store on the 9th of August, or can be brought along to the show on the day. If you have books and can't deliver them on either of those two dates, get in touch and we'll arrange something.
Aldington & Bonnington Gardening Society
Send in a photo of your plot number, or one you've seen and particularly like, to firstname.lastname@example.org
Donations of gardening books were outstanding, with some really super brand new books alongside more vintage titles. While a lot have sold, there is still a wide choice of titles which will be available the next time the Trading Store is open.
There will also be a book stall at the Summer Show, so please turn out all your surplus gardening books and bring them to the Trading Store so we can keep the ball rolling.
The money raised will go towards show expenses - it will be very good to start organising the Show with a petty cash kitty to call on, rather than asking individual helpers to lend the Society money!
A big thank you to all those who donated stuff, all those who turned up and bought, and the volunteers who helped keep everything running smoothly when we were so busy!
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